Nothing is for sure just yet but developers looking to join those who operate Mississippi casinos are on their way. Last week, parties behind a plan to open what would be the 13th casino in the southern part of Mississippi got a preliminary approval.
It’s uncertain when the developers will seek final approval and actually start building the property out. Some details of the plan for the Hancock County casino are public now, however.
Commissioners approve plan to expand Mississippi casinos
According to Mary Perez of Yahoo News, Mississippi Gaming Commission members unanimously approved a site for another casino on the state’s gulf coast. The site, which is in Hancock County on South Beach Blvd., is likely familiar to casino regulars in the area.
The plot consists of four acres which lie adjacent to the Silver Slipper Casino and Buccaneer State Park. The proposed facility will be a namesake for the area it occupies, South Beach Casino & Resort. Perez reports that the plans include:
- 40,000 square feet of gaming floor
- 1,100 slot machines
- 25 gaming tables
- Six poker tables
State law also requires such facilities to offer hotels with at least 300 rooms, at least one fine dining establishment, and at least one entertainment amenity unrelated to gambling. There are currently 12 casinos in the Gaming Commission’s southern district of Mississippi.
How soon South Beach could become the 13th is unclear. There is more work to do before the developers can actually break ground.
Final approval still pending
The site approval for Mississippi casinos is quite preliminary. Essentially all it means is that the Commission is ok with a casino being built on the land. The Commission still has yet to approve detailed plans for the South Beach Casino & Resort.
The developers cannot begin their work on the site until they have that approval. According to Perez, several other casino projects have received site approvals but have yet to actually submit building plans for consideration.
There is no deadline for when the South Beach developers can submit those plans. However, should they receive final permissions, state law gives them three years to complete construction. How soon the application for final approval comes will signal how prepared the developers are to proceed.
In the meantime, the 12 existing casinos in southern Mississippi will continue to compete among themselves. It could be some time yet before a 13th property might challenge them.